I've tried to get into chess, and I'll probably try again. However, it's a bit challenging for those of us who like fast-paced games free of long lulls of silent thought, or who fire up Chessmaster just to get beat by 6-year-old beginner competitors. (I'm convinced that the makers of that game made the easy players kids to mock those of us who get into it late in the game.) Anyhow, you chess fans out there are about to get sexy, foreign chess on the big screen courtesy of writer Caroline Bottaro (C'est la vie).

Variety reports that she's going to make her directorial debut with a film called Joueuse, otherwise known as The Chess Player. Sandrine Bonnaire (Vagabond) who also starred in C'est la vie, and Bruno Ganz (Youth Without Youth) will star in the French-German co-production, which is about "a hotel chambermaid who develops an obsession for chess." Oh, the possibilities! This could be a racy tale of chess and hotels, since Ganz's role isn't mentioned. Instead of some bad guys, chases, and intrigue, they could bond over the smooth finish of the pawn before taking the queen, or king, so to speak. It could be about a crazy lady who leaves chess pieces throughout the hotel. Or, maybe something more Twin Peaksish.

The production got a nice bit of money, $700,000, from the German-French Film Funding Commission, but this is the only film that's received help. The same amount is going to Gaspar Noe's Enter the Void, and some money is also going to Ludi Boeken's Among Peasants.